2018 Belmont Stakes

150th Belmont Stakes
Belmont Stakes
Grade I stakes race
2018 Belmont Stakes logo.png
"The Test of the Champion"
LocationBelmont Park
Elmont, New York, U.S.
DateJune 9, 2018 (2018-06-09)
Distance1 12 mi (12 furlongs; 2,414 m)
Winning horseJustify
Winning time2:28.18
Final odds4-5
Jockey Mike Smith
TrainerBob Baffert
OwnerChina Horse Club, Head of Plains Partners, Starlight Racing & WinStar Farm
ConditionsFast[1]
SurfaceDirt
Attendance90,327[2]
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The 2018 Belmont Stakes was the 150th running of the Belmont Stakes and the 107th time the event took place at Belmont Park. The 1 12-mile (2,400 m) race, known as the "test of the champion", is the final leg in the American Triple Crown. It is a Grade I stakes race with a purse of $1.5 million, open to three-year-old Thoroughbreds. The race took place on June 9, 2018, and was broadcast on NBC starting at 4 p.m. EDT. Justify won the race with a time of 2:28.18, becoming the thirteenth American Triple Crown winner.

Field

Entries for the Belmont were taken on June 5, followed by the post position draw.[3] Justify was attempting to become the first horse to win the American Triple Crown since American Pharoah did so in 2015. He faced horses that he had previously beaten in the Kentucky Derby or Preakness, plus a few "new shooters" who did not compete in those races. His major competitors included:[4][5]

  • Bravazo – sixth in the Kentucky Derby, second in the Preakness, winner of the Risen Star Stakes
  • Tenfold – third in the Preakness
  • Hofburg – seventh in the Kentucky Derby
  • Vino Rosso – ninth in the Kentucky Derby, winner of the Wood Memorial
  • Noble Indy – 17th in the Kentucky Derby, winner of the Louisiana Derby
  • Free Drop Billy – 16th in the Kentucky Derby, winner of the Breeders' Futurity
  • Gronkowski – a multiple stakes winner in Europe (and named after Rob Gronkowski, who became a part-owner)
  • Blended Citizen – winner of the Peter Pan Stakes

Audible, who finished third in the Kentucky Derby and would have been one of Justify's top competitors in the Belmont, was not considered for the race. Although the two colts have different trainers, they share common ownership (WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, Starlight Racing and Head of Plains Partners), leading some to conclude that the owners did not want to increase the pressure on Justify in his Triple Crown bid.[6]

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